An Taisce has welcomed the decision by Heritage Minister Josepha Madigan not to proceed with Regulations which would allow hedge cutting in August this year.

The Heritage Act 2018 allowed the Minister the discretion of permitting hedge cutting on a trial basis in 2019 and 2020.

According to an Taisce, the passing of the 2018 Act through the Oireachtas was a major blow to nature conservation in Ireland, and was opposed by numerous Irish environmental organisations, in addition to over 30,000 people who signed a petition against it.

An Taisce claims that hedgerow cutting in August impacts negatively on late-nesting bird species, such as the endangered Yellowhammer. August hedgerows also provide food sources for pollinators, such as wild bees and butterflies, in addition to mammals.

Dr. Elaine McGoff, Natural Environment Officer with An Taisce told Midwest News today that this welcome decision appears to mark a turning point in government policy.

Adding that it’s great news for hedgerows in 2019, “but we would like to see a guarantee that hedgerow cutting in August will not be permitted in other years.’

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